Cuba to lay off 5,00,000 state employees

London, Sep 14 (ANI): The Cuba Government has announced plans to make at least half a million state workers redundant and reduce restrictions on private enterprise in the most dramatic step yet to remodel employment on the communist-run island.

This decision of the government could lay off at least half a million state workers.

With Cuba's official work force reported to be 5.1 million - nearly 10 per cent of all employees could soon be out of their government jobs.

The state workers here are worried by the announcement saying whether the tiny private sector could support so many new job opportunities.

"For me the problem is the salaries, that's the root of it. If they fire all of these people, how can they all become self-employed?" The Telegraph quoted 47-year-old government worker Alberto Fuentes, as saying.

It has been reported that the layoffs will start immediately and continue until April 2011 with the state eventually employing people only in 'indispensable' areas such as farming, construction, industry, law enforcement and education.

To soften the blow, the statement - which appeared in state newspapers and was read on television and radio - said the government would increase private-sector job opportunities, including allowing more Cubans to become self-employed, the paper reports. (ANI)

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